ENBIS-8 in Athens

21 – 25 September 2008 Abstract submission: 14 March – 11 August 2008

A Heuristic Method for Marketing Surveys

22 September 2008, 11:39 – 11:43


Submitted by
Stefano Barone
Stefano Barone, Alberto Lombardo and Pietro Tarantino
University of Palermo, Department of Manufacturing Technology and Managerial Engineering
Many decision-making theories and models derived from the integration of knowledge from several fields, such as cognitive and motivational science, psychology, psychometrics, communication and information science, sociology and statistics. These theories are particularly used for the identification of important attributes composing the product and the service under study. The knowledge of these attributes (their effects and interactions) is increasingly important in the present competitive and aggressive market. In fact, once the important attributes are determined, a company can adapt its product development strategy earlier than competitors, or more simply update their advertisement tactics. Although there has been a considerable improvement of models for predicting consumer behavior, the definition of practical methods able to efficiently translate theory into tools for preference capturing is still needed. Such consideration is due to the intrinsic complexity of the decision making science. This work aims at presenting a new practical method for capturing consumer attribute preferences indirectly, by using the choice time in a ranking task. It allows the analyst to indirectly obtain a respondent’s relative importance weights for several tested attributes by a simple, fast and economical procedure. Moreover, it allows overcoming most of the problems with context, survey and cognitive variables, i.e. variables influencing cognitive mechanisms driving consumers in their decision processes. A validation of the proposed method and its statistical consistency is illustrated through the results of a real experiment concerning the attributes of a cellular phone.

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